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CPS board to vote on Yearwood contract extension, sample ballot

Courtesy of Columbia Public Schools

The Columbia School Board will vote whether to extend Superintendent Brian Yearwood’s contract at its upcoming meeting on Monday.

Yearwood has been the district’s superintendent since the start of the 2021-2022 school year.

His current contract, approved by the board in May 2022, goes through June 2025 and pays him a salary of $239,000. The proposed extension would run through June 2026 and doesn’t specify compensation.

The board will also consider a sample ballot — which does not include former state Rep. Chuck Basye — for the April 4 election for three board seats.

Basye’s absence from the sample ballot could present controversy. He filed to run for the board through the Boone County Clerk’s Office, not the district. Whether he will actually qualify remains unclear.

Basye has suggested on social media that he might file a lawsuit in an attempt to appear on the ballot.

Seven other candidates who filed with the district are on the sample ballot that the board will consider. They are: Paul Harper, John Potter, current board Vice President Chris Horn, Dean Klempke, James Gordon, John Lyman and April Ferrao.

The district must submit an election notice and sample ballot to the county clerk’s office by late January.

Current board President David Seamon and board member Helen Wade are not seeking re-election.

Budget parameters

Also Monday, the board will vote on whether to approve parameters for development of the 2023-2024 budget. According to meeting documents regarding budgeting parameters, the district has seen declining state and federal funding, thus causing the district to rely on local revenue sources.

The parameters that the board’s Finance Committee recommended for board approval include a $15 starting wage for hourly workers to “remain competitive in a tight labor market.”

Nature School agreement

At its September meeting, the board approved a resolution that would allow the district to enter a lease purchase agreement for the Boone County Nature School project. The resolution outlined that the purchase could not exceed $2.5 million. Now, the board will vote whether to approve the purchase.

The Nature School project is a partnership between the district and the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Special recognition

The board will also recognize staff named Staff Member of the Month from by respective schools. The list of staff members includes:

  • Nokomis Tilford, Hickman High School
  • Jeff Linhardt, Lange Middle School
  • Crystal Linneman, Rock Bridge Elementary School
  • Tammie Rowe, New Haven Elementary School
  • Taylor Riffe, Discovery, Early Childhood Special Education

How to watch

The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. Monday in the Aslin Administration Building, 1818 W. Worley St. It will be livestreamed on CPS-TV, which can be viewed on the district’s website, CenturyLink, Mediacom, Charter Spectrum, Roku, Apple TV and Fire TV.

The Columbia Missourian is a community news organization managed by professional editors and staffed by Missouri School of Journalism students who do the reporting, design, copy editing, information graphics, photography and multimedia.